EXAMINATION OF THE EFFECT OF STUDY HABITS ON ACADEMIC PERFORMANCE
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1.1 BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
Education is an instrument that not only fills the missing links and gaps created due to a fast paced life, but also creates general awareness about changing scenario. Education is the axis around which revolves the fullness of human being and education forms an effective means to improve the status of character of living patterns of the pupil, helps in intellectual, social and emotional development and enables them to meet their basic needs. Thus education is an indispensable instrument for stability and progress of individual as well as society. In education, effective learning not only depends upon good teaching but also on satisfactory learning procedure i.e. good study habits.
Over the years, the issue of poor academic performance of students in Nigeria has been of much concern to all stakeholders involved. The problem is so much that it has led to the widely acclaimed fallen standard of education in Nigeria at large. Employers of labour no longer believe in the capacity of various educational institutions to provide graduates who are worth their salt or termed “employable”. Various issues have been pointed out as causative factors for this and one germane factor out of all is the issue of study habit.
According to Aristotle, habit is what we repeatedly do. Habits generate other habits. Inspiration is what gets us started, motivation is what keeps us on track, and habit is what makes us automatic. Anything we practice long enough becomes ingrained into our system and becomes a habit. Students are basically having their own individual differences. It all depends upon their ability and capacity. We do observe that some students have the habit of studying daily lessons regularly. Academic performance is defined as excellence in all academic discipline rather than fatalistically accepting it and competing against some standard of excellence (Chamundeswari 2014).
Study habits are defined as those techniques, such as summarizing, note taking, outlining or locating material which learners employ to assist themselves in the efficient learning of the material at hand. The term “Study Habit” implies a sort of more or less permanent method of studying. According to Good’s dictionary of education, “Study habit is the tendency of pupil to study when the opportunities are given, the pupil’s way of studying whether systematic or unsystematic, efficient or inefficient.”Study-habits are the essence of a dynamic personality. A proper study habits enables an individual to reap a good harvest in future.
Study habit is a process from which an individual gets proper input to feed his hunger and to quench his thrust for knowledge. The study habits thus are of great assistance to actualize the potentialities of the individual (suresh 2013).
Study habits and skills are particularly important for undergraduate students, whose needs include time management, note taking, Internet skill, the elimination of distractions, and assigning a high priority to study. Fielden (2004) states that good study habits help the student in critical reflection in skills outcomes such as selecting, analyzing, critiquing, and synthesizing. Nneji (2002) states that study habits are learning tendencies that enable students work privately. Azikiwe (1998) describes study habits as the way and manner a student plans his or her private reading outside lecture hours in order to master a particular subject or topic. Study habits help students master their areas of specialization.
Bakare (1977) in his study habit inventory pointed out eight key sources of poor academic achievement. Study habit problems associated with student’s response to home work and assignments; reading and note taking and study period procedure; student’s concentration; towards examination and teachers’ consultation. The inability to utilize effectively and positively these sources of study problems may stand in the way of effective study and good performance among the students.
The relationship between study habit and students’ academic performance has for long has received attention from scholars and educational agencies. Nuthane & Yenage (2009) has examined the causes of poor academic performance among university undergraduates. Some of these factors identified are intellectual ability, poor study habits, achievement motivation, lack of vocational goals, self concept, low socio- economic status of the family, poor family structure and so on.
The concept of study habit comprises the concept of study attitude, study method and study skill. Attitude towards study has great contribution in academic achievement and good study pattern. Successful students adopt positive attitude towards study and do not waste time or energy. However, there are still myriads of cases of failure recorded, and then the question is what are the successful students doing differently from those who fail? Owing to this, there is the need to study the effect of study habits on academic performance.
1.2 STATEMENT OF THE PROBLEM
A great deal of research provides evidence that study habits and study attitudes are both significant variables, which determine the academic performance of students. Yet, in spite of the perceived importance of study habits and study attitudes to academic achievement, it seems that education institution still pay little attention to understanding these factors (Baquiran, 2011).Classroom observations show that under the same conditions, namely same professor, same subject, same teaching system, same administration, same enrollment criteria, same time of the day for an specific course and same education level, some students perform well while others do not. The question arises as to what are the aspects that influence this difference in performance, and what is the best way to arrange the study process of multicultural groups of college students, so that all learn and perform accordingly with schools’ expectations. Conditions, namely same lecturers, same course, same teaching system, same administration, same enrollment criteria, same time of the day for an specific course and same education level, some students perform well while others do not. The question arises as to what are the aspects that influence this difference in performance, and what is the best way to arrange the study process of university undergraduates, so that all learn and perform accordingly with schools’ expectations.
Hence, it is considered important to know what habits university undergraduates have and, in case of low-performing students, which of those habits need to be changed in order to improve performance. The importance of improving habits lays in their relationship with attitudes, which are deemed important for achieving high academic performance.
1.3 OBJECTIVES OF THE STUDY
The main objective of this study is to examine the effect of study habits on the academic performance. However, this study certifies the following objectives;
1. Investigate the relationship between study habit and student’s academic performance.
2. To assess the study habits of University undergraduates;
3. Compare the academic performance of undergraduates who have developed a study habit and those who do not have study habit;
4. Assess factors influencing students study habit;
1.4 RESEARCH QUESTIONS
1. Is there any relationship between study habit and academic performance of university undergraduates?
2. How does the study habit of male and female university undergraduates affect their performance?
1.5 RESEARCH HYPOTHESIS
H01– There is no significant relationship between study habit and academic performance of university undergraduates.
H02-There is no significant difference between the study habit of male and female university undergraduates andtheir academic performance.
1.6 SIGNIFICANCE OF THE STUDY
This study will be useful to many people who may want to know the factors that could make or mar student’s academic performance.
It attempts to combine study skills with study habit and how they both affect academic performance of students. Study skills such as note taking skills, reading skills, writing skills etc. are all significant when we talk of academic performance as a student who is deficient in any of these would not have perform well academically.
It will provide valuable information about the effects of poor study habit on the academic performance of students. The study will attempt to give various effects of poor study habits on academic performance such as academic failure etc.
Education institutions as well as students and society may benefit from the results of this investigation. Institutions may benefit with data that may allow them to evaluate their current admission policies and counseling programs, teachers may find this research useful to design more suitable classroom practices and students may have a clearer idea of the challenges they may face based on their current study habits and hence prepare better to perform well during the whole study period, and finally, society may benefit by receiving young professionals that are better prepared for the day-to-day challenges on global working environments.
It will serve as resource materials for others who want to carry out research in related field
1.7 SCOPE OF THE STUDY
The scope of this study focus on all Olabisi Onabanjo University Undergraduates, which comprise all the students from all the faculties.
1.8 DEFINITION OF TERMS
Study habits: These are mainly external factors that facilitate the study process such as sound study routines that include how often a student engage in studying sessions, review the material, self-evaluate, rehears explaining the material, and studying in a conducive environment.
Academic performance: This refers to the performance that falls within specified standard. The specified standard is usually called pass mark and the pass mark is score above average which students are considered having passed and below which students are considered having failed.
Undergraduates: These are students at a university who have not yet received a degree.